Frequently asked questions
At what time are the services...
- What else is going on this month?
- How can I find out more about the Christian faith? Where can I start?
- Can I get married in church?
- How do I have my child baptised and/or confirmed?
- Where can I find out about being confirmed?
- What do I do when someone I love dies?
- Where can I find information on where someone is buried?
- How do I hire The Canterbury Room at St Thomas' Church in Goring?
- How do I hire St Mary's Church in Streatley?
- When are the bell ringing practice times?
- How do I join the electoral roll?
- How can I give a donation to one of the churches?
Across the United Benefice of Goring, Streatley and South Stoke, there are many services and events happening:
Christianity is about developing a relationship with God through Jesus Christ and in community with other people. One of the best ways of finding out more is to meet some Christians to talk about faith and ask questions.
We regularly offer introductory courses on the Christian faith. Contact the Ministry team via the Benefice email address.
Many Christians meet in smaller groups as well as being part of a Sunday congregation. Small groups meet regularly to study the Bible together. See the section on Home groups or contact the Ministry team via the Benefice email address..
The Family services are specially designed for you if you are interested in finding out more about the Christian faith or if you are a new Christian. You are very welcome to come along. Check the calendar for the next Family Service in the Benefice.
Perhaps you feel ready to become a Christian today. If so, please pray the prayer that is below and then speak with one of the Ministry team via the Benefice email address.
'Lord Jesus, I am sorry for the things I have done wrong in my life. I ask your forgiveness and now turn from everything which I know is wrong. Thank you for dying on the cross for me to set me free from my sins. Please come into my life and fill me with your Holy Spirit. Help me to follow you for the rest of my life. Amen.'
Marrying in church offers a unique opportunity to create a wedding that is personal, meaningful and spiritual. You do not have to be regular member of our congregation to marry in one of our beautiful historic churches and, due to a recent change in the law, it may be possible, if you have a connection with the church, to marry here without living in the villages of Goring, Streatley or South Stoke.
The clergy team is keen to support you, not only as you prepare for your wedding day, but also as you begin your married life together. We therefore offer all wedding couples an opportunity to talk through the big issues. Sometimes this can be in a group with other couples, ahead of your wedding day.
Whilst marriage is for life we also recognise that some marriages do fail. If you or your partner have been married before, it may be possible for you to be married again in church. Contact the Ministry team who will meet with you to discuss this further. Alternatively, a service of prayer and dedication after a civil ceremony may be possible. Contact the Ministry team via the Benefice email address to discuss this.
For further guidance on planning a church wedding please see the Church of England website:
We are delighted you are thinking of having your child baptised. At baptism you promise to raise your child to know that God loves him or her, and that you will help your child to follow Jesus as a member of the Church.
The congregations here are keen to support you and your child as you take this important step. Baptisms usually take place on a Sunday afternoon, by arrangement; enquiries to the Benefice office on 875651.
We also offer the opportunity for older children, who have not been previously baptised, to undertake their own faith promises at a service of baptism and confirmation. Within the United Benefice courses are run which explore the basics of the Christian faith. These are a foundation for confirmation preparation. Contact the Ministry team via the Benefice email address.
For further guidance on baptism, please see the Church of England website:
Confirmation marks the point at which you feel ready to affirm, for yourself, the Christian faith. Anyone who has been baptised, who is old enough to answer responsibly, and has received appropriate preparation, can be confirmed.
For adults who have not been previously baptised, baptism and confirmation normally take place within the same service.
This United Benefice offers regular opportunities for confirmation preparation, for all ages. Please contact a member of the ministry team if you would like to know more via the Benefice email address.
We are very sorry to hear of your loss. We advise that you first contact a funeral director who will guide you through the initial practical decisions you need to make for the funeral.
The clergy team are here to support you in your grief. One of us will be happy to visit you and we will meet with other members of your family if you wish. We can help you to consider the type of funeral you would like and to plan the funeral and/or thanksgiving service in church or at a crematorium. Contact a member of the Ministry team via the Benefice email address.
For further guidance of funerals, please see the Church of England website:
We maintain records of those buried in our churchyards. Our United Benefice Secretary holds the register of this information.
Please contact the United Benefice Secretary in the first instance who will forward your request.
For more information, contact:
Oxfordshire County Council
Open Wed. Thurs. Sat. 9.00-5.00pm. Tel: 01865 398200
Berkshire Records Office
9 Coley Avenue
Open Tues. Wed. 9.00-5.00, Thurs 9.00-9.00pm, Fri. 9.00-4.30pm. Tel: 0118 937 5132
We are currently exploring the feasibility of providing an on-line form, but in the meantime please contact the Benefice email address.
Thank you for thinking of donating. Churches are always in need of financial support to maintain these ancient and beautiful buildings for future generations to enjoy.
Donating to a church